Activity Overview

Drawing inferences and figuring out how one character relates to and plays off of another is a good exercise for students. Comparing and contrasting characters like Bruno and Shmuel enables the student to think about what the text says explicitly and allows them to draw local conclusions.

When comparing Bruno and Shmuel, students should see that Bruno is a very curious boy, yet he is utterly ignorant about the situation around him. Shmuel, though he may not realize that hundreds of detainees are being executed, is aware that he is seen as a third-class citizen - or even a “non-person” - and is very careful not to incite the anger of guards around the camp.

  • Before reading, it is good to introduce your students to a list of characters.

  • While reading, students should track their characters and fill in information about them. A great way to do this is to stop after each or chapter and ask them to fill in the new information they learned. If students run out of room on their worksheets, they can continue in their notebooks or on the back of the paper.

  • After reading, have students compare the completed worksheets with a classmate, recording any information they may have missed. This makes for an excellent study guide or have students complete a writing assignment based on a character.

Have students attach their storyboard to a paper requiring in-depth explanation of an element throughout the novel, or couple this assignment with a presentation.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Student Instructions

Create a storyboard identifying the similarities and differences between two characters in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas.

  1. Click "Start Assignment"
  2. In one column, describe the similarities between your chosen characters.
  3. In the other column, describe the differences.
  4. Illustrate each example with appropriate scenes, characters, and items.
  5. Save and submit your storyboard.

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 6-8

Difficulty Level 2 (Reinforcing / Developing)

Type of Assignment Individual, Partner, or Group

Type of Activity: Compare and Contrast with T-Charts

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/7/3] Analyze how particular elements of a story or drama interact (e.g., how setting shapes the characters or plot)


(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)

Compare and Contrast
Create a storyboard that compares the similarities and differences between two things.
Proficient Emerging Beginning
Comparison Analysis
Text and images include a clear explanation of similarities and/or differences between the categories or topics. These comparisons go beyond superficial elements and show strong understanding.
Text and images include an explanation of similarities and/or differences between the categories or topics, but the explanation may lack clarity or show only superficial understanding in some squares.
Text and images may include no explanation of similarities and/or differences, or they may make only superficial or inaccurate comparisons.
Storyboard Image and Effort
Student clearly shows effort to convey the setting, characters and specific scene of the book. The scene is clearly identifiable based on the graphic depiction.
Student attempts to convey the setting, characters, and specific scene through use of graphics, but the depiction may be confusing, disordered, or lack some detail.
Student does not clearly convey the setting, characters, and scene.
Spelling and Grammar
Student uses exemplary spelling and grammar. There are no errors.
Student makes one or two minor errors in spelling and grammar.
Student makes multiple errors in spelling and grammar.

More Storyboard That Activities

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

Image Attributions
  • 23072-Auschwitz • xiquinhosilva • License Attribution (
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